Blueberries are good for nutrition, and muffins

Blueberries are good for the heart and the muffins they make can be good for the soul. This recipe, made with fresh blueberries from the garden, makes at least 24 muffins.

We have two blueberry bushes at our house. This year, the bushes have produced more than the usual number of blueberries. We have added them to our pancakes, put them in the freezer, and eaten them fresh.

Matter of fact, my 19-month-old granddaughter, Eilee, loves fresh blueberries and has gotten to enjoy many of Papaw’s berries.

Did you know that blueberries are healthy and nutritious for you? One cup of blueberries is 85% water which means that one cup only contains 84 calories. They boost your heart health, brain function and other aspects of your body. They’re sweet, colorful and enjoyed whether you are eating fresh or frozen berries.

Blueberry Cream Muffins from allrecipes.com makes 24 muffins. Using my 2-inch scoop, I was able to get 30 muffins from this recipe. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and place paper liners in your muffin pans. Muffins are a quick bread which means you do not want to over mix your batter. Only use an electric mixer to combine your wet ingredients — eggs, sugar, oil, and vanilla extract. Your dry ingredients — flour, salt, and baking powder — are to be stirred or sifted together in a separate bowl.

You will add, by hand, the dry ingredients alternating with the sour cream into the wet mixture. The last item to add is the blueberries. To keep the blueberries from sinking to the bottom of the muffins, toss the blueberries with one tablespoon of flour before adding them to the completed batter. Do not over-mix, just stir the ingredients together until most of the flour is not showing. A few lumps may remain and that is OK. They will disappear in the batter as the muffins bake.

If you chose to use frozen blueberries, make sure they remain frozen when you add them to the batter. If you let the berries thaw before adding to batter you will end up with colored batter.

Bake the blueberry cream muffins for 20 minutes. I recommend setting the timer for 17 minutes then check to see if the muffins are lightly browned and done. If not, add an additional minute and check again. Ovens vary, setting the timer less than the time recommended in the recipe is one way to prevent burning or muffins that are too dry. Once the muffins are out of the oven, place them on a cooling rack for about 10 minutes. Store any leftover muffins in an airtight container. This recipe can easily be cut in half if you only want to prepare 12 muffins.

I took these muffins to two different places where I volunteer and they received rave reviews. They are easy to prepare and can be changed with different types of berries — strawberries, raspberries, or any other type of berry your family may enjoy. The addition of sour cream makes these muffins really moist and the blueberries add an extra sweetness and health benefits. They are bound to become your go-to muffin recipe!

Cherie Mingus is a retired teacher who taught family and consumer sciences at Central Hardin High School. She can be reached at cheriemingus@gmail.com.

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